Day 335 – It’s off to work we go…….

Thursday 1st December 2011.

But we’re not sure where or what we’ll be doing.  You see we were having a surprise trip today.  Well, sort of a surprise……   In advance, we knew that it consisted of meeting up in Head Office in Germany and then travelling on to somewhere within approximately two hours.  I mean, fancy asking two girls to pack for a trip like that!  First off the guessing game started, which included sensible suggestions such as visiting the birthplace of the company C&A (from Lieve), going to a Christmas Market (knowing our colleagues love of all things traditional that was my vote!), to worst case scenario, we were off to the Gas chambers for having annoyed the guys just one time too many!  Wishful thinking included Carribean islands, and a trip to the North Pole to see Father Christmas!  Turned out it was a good job we packed sensible shoes, a calm outfit for the evening and left the bikini at home, as we travelled to Mettingen (where C&A all started) and to Munster (a merchant city nearby with a lot of history, oh and a Christmas Market!).

Draiflessen is the name of the exhibition centre in Mettingen which archives and displays exhibitions about the history of C&A (in many formats) and is also a conference centre.  The name derives from the old secret language used by merchants on the borders of Germany and NL, Drai meaning 3 (representing the family, the employee family, and the customer, as a total family) and flessen meaning the flax on which the original trading business of the founding brothers Clemens and Augustus (hence C&A) was founded 175 years ago.  The exhibition centre was fascinating, from the wonderful architecture, to the current exhibition celebrating 100 years in Germany and opening up some of the mystery surrounding the family and it’s German roots.  As 3 out of the 4 of us visiting, have a history too with C&A totalling more than 75 years, it was exciting to see a lot of old familiar things.  Like Hugin machines, which used to print price tickets (and now look like something out of the Ark, or an episode of Doctor Who!) and the girlswear designs that my team put together a couple of years back for one of our fashion shows.

But our memory to go down in history, and luckily not documented due to photography restrictions, was that of our Boss, Lieve and I, riding Palomino horses (do you remember them in the kids areas of the stores?).  Interesting considering the height of Hermann, the particular movement of Lieve’s horse, and the fact she was wearing a mini-skirt.  I’m still giggling at the thought!

Related websites

History – About us – Company – C&A.

The History Of Advertising Trust.

Startseite.

draiflessen

photo via Nattler Architekten – Archives 2010.

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